New York Philharmonic tour to include stop in Tbilisi, Georgia

Posted on: June 23, 2010

In Wednesday’s (6/23) New York Times, Daniel J. Wakin writes, “Lisa Batiashvili, the violin soloist, is one of the most famous classical musicians to have emerged from Georgia, so it was no surprise when that country’s president met with her before a rare concert appearance in Tbilisi, the capital, in October. The seed of an idea was planted. Ms. Batiashvili, who has had a long association with the New York Philharmonic, asked the orchestra if it would be interested in visiting. It said yes. A week later she called the president, Mikheil Saakashvili, and in minutes, the deal was done. … And so the Philharmonic, ever in search of exotic destinations, said Tuesday that it would visit Georgia for the first time, as part of a European tour, with Ms. Batiashvili performing Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1. The tour is being led by Alan Gilbert, the orchestra’s music director. The Philharmonic will perform on Oct. 21 at the Djansug Kakhidze Tbilisi Center for Music and Culture, named for the most prominent conductor in Georgia. … While a homecoming of sorts for Ms. Batiashvili, who was 12 when she emigrated to Germany in 1991, the tour may also have a modest political benefit for a country that has sought to strengthen its ties with the West.”

Posted June 23, 2010